Canto 6: Prescribed Duties for MankindChapter 1: The History of the Life of Ajāmila

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 6.1.34-36

sarve padma-palāśākṣāḥ


kirīṭinaḥ kuṇḍalino


sarve ca nūtna-vayasaḥ

sarve cāru-caturbhujāḥ



diśo vitimirālokāḥ

kurvantaḥ svena tejasā

kim arthaḿ dharma-pālasya

kińkarān no niṣedhatha


sarve — all of you; padma-palāśa-akṣāḥ — with eyes like the petals of a lotus flower; pīta — yellow; kauśeya — silk; vāsasaḥ — wearing garments; kirīṭinaḥ — with helmets; kuṇḍalinaḥ — with earrings; lasat — glittering; puṣkara-mālinaḥ — with a garland of lotus flowers; sarve — all of you; ca — also; nūtna-vayasaḥ — very youthful; sarve — all of you; cāru — very beautiful; catuḥ-bhujāḥ — with four arms; dhanuḥ — bow; niṣańga — quiver of arrows; asi — sword; gadā — club; śańkha — conchshell; cakra — disc; ambuja — lotus flower; śriyaḥ — decorated with; diśaḥ — all directions; vitimira — without darkness; ālokāḥ — extraordinary illumination; kurvantaḥ — exhibiting; svena — by your own; tejasā — effulgence; kim artham — what is the purpose; dharma-pālasya — of Yamarāja, the maintainer of religious principles; kińkarān — servants; naḥ — us; niṣedhatha — you are forbidding.


The order carriers of Yamarāja said: Your eyes are just like the petals of lotus flowers. Dressed in yellow silken garments, decorated with garlands of lotuses, and wearing very attractive helmets on your heads and earrings on your ears, you all appear fresh and youthful. Your four long arms are decorated with bows and quivers of arrows and with swords, clubs, conchshells, discs and lotus flowers. Your effulgence has dissipated the darkness of this place with extraordinary illumination. Now, sirs, why are you obstructing us?


Before even being introduced to a foreigner, one becomes acquainted with him through his dress, bodily features and behavior and can thus understand his position. Therefore when the Yamadūtas saw the Viṣṇudūtas for the first time, they were surprised. They said, "By your bodily features you appear to be very exalted gentlemen, and you have such celestial power that you have dissipated the darkness of this material world with your own effulgences. Why then should you endeavor to stop us from executing our duty?" It will be explained that the Yamadūtas, the order carriers of Yamarāja, mistakenly considered Ajāmila sinful. They did not know that although he was sinful throughout his entire life, he was purified by constantly chanting the holy name of Nārāyaṇa. In other words, unless one is a Vaiṣṇava, one cannot understand the activities of a Vaiṣṇava.

The dress and bodily features of the residents of Vaikuṇṭhaloka are properly described in these verses. The residents of Vaikuṇṭha, who are decorated with garlands and yellow silken garments, have four arms holding various weapons. Thus they conspicuously resemble Lord Viṣṇu. They have the same bodily features as Nārāyaṇa because they have attained the liberation of sārūpya, but they nevertheless act as servants. All the residents of Vaikuṇṭhaloka know perfectly well that their master is Nārāyaṇa, or Kṛṣṇa, and that they are all His servants. They are all self-realized souls who are nitya-mukta, everlastingly liberated. Although they could conceivably declare themselves Nārāyaṇa or Viṣṇu, they never do so; they always remain Kṛṣṇa conscious and serve the Lord faithfully. Such is the atmosphere of Vaikuṇṭhaloka. Similarly, one who learns the faithful service of Lord Kṛṣṇa through the Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement will always remain in Vaikuṇṭhaloka and have nothing to do with the material world.

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness